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Friday, September 05, 2014

Sharks in Fiji

Right after leaving Fiji two years ago I vowed to return to see the Bull Sharks. And so it was a happy coincidence, that the first part of my group tour to Tonga accommodated 9 days in Fiji with 3 Shark Dive Days!

But first we went on a regular "check" dive. Since we were an advanced group, we went straight for the outer reefs where we explored the wreck of Tasu 2.

On Monday it was time for the first two Shark Dives. For the first dive we went down to 25.5 meters and we encountered more fish than we expected. First of all we spotted many Bull Sharks, Sicklefin Lemon Sharks and Tawny Nurse Sharks. Even an elusive Silvertip Shark swam by in the distance and after the feeding ended we spotted a Whitetip Reef Shark cruising along the reef.

For the second dive we went down to 18.5 meters and saw even more Bull and Tawny Nurse Sharks. In addition we spotted the elusive Blacktip Reef Shark.

On Tuesday, another regular dive day was planned and we went out to Frigates, which boasts one of the worlds most famous breaks, which many surfers frequent. For divers it offers many interesting swimmthroughs and a nice wall dive.

On the way back we had a real highlight! Pilot Whales were spotted and we were able to go into the water and snorkel with them! We saw several smaller groups of up to 9 whales and even a mother with her calf! That was a promising start, considering we expect to see many more whales in Tonga :).

On Wednesday, the second Shark Dive Day came around. This time the Silvertip and Blacktip Reef Sharks stayed away, but there was enough action from the other specimens and so it was another memorable two dives!

Thursday was a day of relaxation, which I spent at the pool reading books :).

Friday meant our last day of diving in Fiji and it was another Shark Dive. The first dive was spectacular! At first a Sicklefin Lemon Shark swam right past me and then four Silvertip Sharks turned up and came really close to the divers. They mainly cruised around behind us, which had the advantage that they were easier to spot than all the other sharks which were cruising around the bait.

During the last dive there was a lot of activity again. But one of the highlights was when a guide showed me a Stonefish in the reef during the safety stop.

We had a fantastic time in Fiji, the Shark Dives were definitely worth coming here. The other dive sites were nice, but there wasn't as much fish or soft coral as we would have expected. Nevertheless, for Shark friends, this place is a must visit!

The Waidroka Bay Resort had very friendly and helpful staff. They also drove with their own boat to the Shark Dive, which was an advantage, even though the trip took almost 55 minutes one way.

All pictures can be seen in my webalbum.

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